Roadwork again scheduled to start on Highway 78

LAWRENCEVILLE - Commuters on U.S. Highway 78 - keep your fingers crossed for a Monday drive no manic than any other.

After some equipment didn't arrive on time, construction on the well-traveled road due to begin Wednesday was delayed. It is set, again, to start at 7 tonight.

As part of the construction project that will remove the reversible lane system, converting it to a road with a median, workers will restripe the section of Highway 78 between East and West Park Place and Stone Drive.

They will also remove the reversible lane signs, eliminating the system for that stretch of Highway 78.

Georgia Department of Transportation spokeswoman Teri Pope said the commute will be "vastly different" than it has been for the past two decades.

The median project is due to be finished in November 2009. It will cost more than $31 million.

While construction of the median takes place, there will be two lanes headed eastbound and three headed westbound, with a center turn lane.

Work will take place between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m. seven days a week. Beginning Monday, the outside eastbound lane will be closed for those hours as the median project gets under way.

Once the Stone Mountain laser show starts, no work will take place on Friday or Saturday nights.

Construction will take place in four phases. The second will be Stone Drive to Killian Hill Road, then Killian Hill Road to Highpoint Road and finally Highpoint Road to Ga. Highway 124. When the project is finished, the road will have three lanes in each direction, with sidewalks on both sides of the street and a raised concrete median.

Pope urged drivers to call 511, a free phone service that provides real-time traffic and travel information statewide, for information about the project. Drivers can also e-mail her to receive construction updates at tpope@dot.ga.gov.